Worse Beam Audio after Software Update

  • 6 June 2019
  • 5 replies

Five (5) seconds before the update was completed, my rich audio quality suddenly became the sound of a cheap speaker. Even running through the set up procedure, I couldn’t restore to my original great sound. No excuse that the SONOS software engineers would come out with a update that so dramatically changed the audio performance. Any suggestions for improving the beam overall frequency response and dynamic range?

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5 replies

Since your post is the only one about this issue, it seems like it would be extremely odd that it would be the software update, but instead an issue with your system/device itself. If it was the software, we would see many, many more posts about this kind of thing.

So, there's a couple of things I'd recommend to you. First would be a simple power cycle of the Beam. That would force it to reload the Sonos software. I'd also recommend a power cycle (by which I mean unplugging from the wall, not turning it off with the remote) of your TV set, there may have been some oddness that happened with the HDMI-CEC handshake. A power cycle of the TV would reforce that handshake to occur, as the TV is the "hub" in that system.

Finally, if none of that makes a difference in your system, why don't you contact Sonos Support to discuss it. I suggest the phone folks, they have more tools available because they're on the phone with you, but they are only available during business hours. Both the Twitter and Facebook support folks are available 24/7.
The problem was definitely caused by the software update since the audio change occurred suddenly within 5 seconds of its completion. But tomorrow I will try your idea of recycling the power. I'll let you know how that turns out. Thanks.
It's certainly possible that *your* device didn't reboot properly, but it's not the "SONOS software engineers would come out with a update that so dramatically changed the audio performance" issue.

I can understand the frustration of not having it work properly, I just think you're jumping to assertions that aren't supported by facts.
I might add that I'm using the Beam with an LG OLED using ARC . Could the update caused an audio settings change within the TV?
Well, I was going to say no...but in all honesty, I don't know. I'm not an engineer.

From what I understand, HDMI-CEC is a method by which information from a client device is communicated back to a central "hub", which makes decisions based on what it is told as to what signal it sends back to that device. That's the way the Beam "tells" the TV that it can handle stereo or Dolby Digital, and not DTS, etc, and the TV responds by only sending those "approved" codecs to the Beam.

Can that information change the TV's firmware? I wouldn't think so, that would be bad. But the firmware could get/be in a bad state, potentially, which is why a full reboot by doing a power cycle is often a wise thing, forcing the TV to reload its firmware, and causing a new handshake to occur between the two devices.

In fact, it's never a bad idea to actually confirm that the TV itself has the latest approved firmware from the manufacturer. Yours is a new enough TV that it should have the functionality to reach out across the internet and check/grab and install the latest.

And I'm not absolving Sonos, either. It's entirely possible that anything that may have touched the TV would have also touched the Beam, and gotten its HDMI-CEC information into a bad state. Which is why I recommended a reload of both items. What I am saying it that it's unlikely that it's a software issue caused by a Sonos update. If that were the case, there would be thousands upon thousands of complaints on these forums, and it would probably be newsworthy enough to hit many of the tech news sites as well.

Electronics aren't perfect, they're subject to all sorts of things, from solar flare emissions, to simple power surges, to manufacturing failures, and even software issues, as you indicated.

It's unfortunate that you're experiencing this issue, but I think there's a solution somewhere, and hopefully things will be back to normal shortly.